Gingerbread House Decoration

A gingerbread house made from foam core board will become a treasured Christmas decoration to be enjoyed for generations. You are limited only by your imagination! Get the kids involved and work together to build your own special gingerbread house decoration.

Materials and Supplies

Craft Supplies:

  • Foam core board 14" x 12"
  • Craft knife or Exacto knife
  • Hot glue gun & glue sticks
  • Cake board* 12" or larger circle or square or rectangle
  • Self healing mat or something to protect your work surface when cutting
  • Brown acrylic paint
  • Paintbrush or sponge brush

*You can also use a piece of corrugated cardboard.

decorate your gingerbread houseMaterials for Decorating:

  • String of pearls
  • Craft sticks
  • Cinnamon sticks
  • Ric rac
  • Small stones
  • Buttons
  • Glitter
  • Glitter glue
  • White paint & a sea sponge
  • Beads
  • Fake candy canes
  • Pompoms
  • Small corks
  • Glitter snow or True Snow by Aleenes (comes in a 4oz jar)
  • Snow Accents by Duncan similar to the Aleenes products
  • Decorative fake snow
  • pipe cleaners

Craft Instructions

Check out our Photo page for step by step photos of how to assemble your gingerbread house.

To Make the House:

  • Using the pattern provided, trace 2 each of the roof, side and end pieces onto a piece of foam core board.
  • Cut out all six pieces using either an Exacto or craft knife.  Place a self healing mat under where you are cutting to protect your work surface.
  • Paint one side of each of the pieces with brown paint. Let dry completely. If desired, paint a second coat and let dry.
  • Place one of the end pieces on your work surface with the unpainted side facing up.
  • Squeeze a line of hot glue just inside each of the side edges as pictured.
  • Butt the short end of one side piece up against each of the glue lines. Be sure the painted sides are facing out.
  • Now, place your remaining end piece painted side down on your work surface. Squeeze out two lines of glue as you did on the first piece.
  • Carefully stand this end piece up and butt it up against the two side pieces which are already attached to the first end.
  • Attach the house to the base by holding the house upside down and running a bead of glue along the bottom edges of the house.  Immediately flip the house over and place it on your base. The base is the cake board or a piece of corrugated cardboard.
  • Run a bead of glue up and over the peak of each end piece and run a bead of glue along one of the long unpainted sides of one of the roof sections Do this close to the edge. This long straight edge will be at the peak when assembled. Working quickly so the glue doesn't cool down, place the two roof sections on top of the house. When you do this, gently but firmly press the roof sections into the glue on the peaks and butt the long edge of one of the roof sections up against the glue line on the other roof section.

Decorate your House:

Check out our Photo page for full color examples of decorated gingerbread houses.

The following are some suggestions of ways you could decorate your house.  Use your imagination to come up with your own unique house. Mix and match the different ideas below or come up with your own.

  • Hot glue works the best for attaching most of the decorations. Glue dots can be use on many of the items if you prefer. Tacky glue can be used when attaching glitter, snowflakes or other light weight items.
  • Popsicle sticks can be use in their natural color, you can buy colored ones or you can paint them.
  • Popsicle sticks can be glued to the roof in rows as shingles. They can be cut in half  then glue 3 side by side on one end of the house to create a door.  Glue on a bead or pompom as a door knob.
  • Cut a rectangle out of a piece of craft foam or felt to make doors.
  • You can also use ric rac or ribbon to make an outline of the doors and windows.
  • String of pearls or ric rac can be glued along the eaves of the house and/or to outline all edges of the roof.
  • Cinnamon sticks glued to the base make a great pile of firewood or campfire.
  • Glue rocks or buttons to the base as a walkway.
  • Plastic candy canes or candy canes made out of pipe cleaner make great decorations.
  • For snow effects glue on snowflakes, use a sea sponge and white acrylic paint to paint on a snow effect or use a plastic knife or popsicle stick to apply a product to your house such as Snow Accents by Duncan or Aleene's True Snow or Glitter Snow.
  • Glue batting, polyester fiberfill or decorative flake snow to the base for snow.
  • Squeeze hot glue out into big drips for icicles.
  • We found a button shaped like a holly leaf which we glued on above the door then attached a sparkly red pompom to the center of the holly leaf.
  • Make snowmen by gluing two or three craft foam marshmallows or pompoms on top of each other. Make a scarf from a scrap of fabric. Cut the tip off a mini cork and paint it orange for a nose or use an orange pipe cleaner. The snowman's eyes and mouth can be made of small black beads or use black fabric paint in a squeeze bottle to make dots for eyes and a mouth.
  • To make a sled, you will need two artificial candy canes and a piece of craft foam.  If you don't have artificial candy canes make them by twisting a red and a white pipe cleaner together then bend it into the shape of a candy cane. Cut the pipe cleaner to make smaller candy canes. Lay the two candy canes on your work surface so they look like sleigh runners. Glue a piece of craft foam to the long straight part of the candy cane.
  • On one of our houses we made windows by cutting a square of yellow craft foam and drawing a big black + on the craft foam. Next we cut two pieces of popsicle stick the height of the craft foam and cut two the width of the craft foam. Glue the two long pieces onto the craft foam then glue the two short ones in the opposite directions but so that the ends are on top of the first two pieces of popsicle stick.
  • You can also attach craft foam shapes such as trees and snowmen to the outside of the house.
  • Glue Styrofoam balls to the base as snowballs.
  • Make a tree out of a green pipe cleaner by wrapping it around in a coil like fashion then pull the center of the tree up.
  • To make a wreath, take three pieces of green pipe cleaner and braid them. cut to desired length then bend it to form a circle and twist the ends together. Tie a bow to where you twisted the ends together. Cut some beads off a string of pearls and glue them to the wreath.
  • Glue a star to the peak of the house.
  • On one house, we sprayed it with a can of glitter spray.
  • For a log cabin effect, try covering the house with cinnamon sticks.

You will need Acrobat Reader to view the pattern as it is a PDF.

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